Joy for drivers as A1 roadworks finally end - and extra lanes open
Drivers will see an end to months of misery as works finally come to an end on a stretch of the A1.
Extra lanes on the A1 in Gateshead will open after roadworks along a four-mile section of the road started to be lifted.
Contractors for Highways England began taking away the cones and barriers along the route earlier this week and an extra lane will be fully opened in each direction over the weekend along the entire stretch from junction 67 (Coal House) to the Metro Centre at junction 71.
Roadworks have already been removed southbound between junction 68 (Lobley Hill) and junction 67 (Coal House), and northbound between junction 69 (Gateshead Quays) and the Metro Centre.
The final removal of the roadworks was due to take place tonight (Thursday 30 June) but emergency work to repair a sink hole means the extra lanes will now be fully opened over the weekend.
The Â£61million project to increase the number of lanes from two to three, and create two new local link roads will tackle congestion and increase capacity.
Finishing work on the project will continue once the extra lanes are opened to carry out landscaping and electrical works, with the official opening for the scheme due to take place next week.
The temporary speed limit of 40mph will also be removed over the weekend, returning to the 50mph speed limit that was in force before the scheme started.
Highways England Project Manager Lynne Biddles said: “The speed restrictions and cones are now being removed so drivers can benefit from the extra lanes along the A1.
“We would ask that people do remain vigilant when they are driving along this stretch while workers are close-by, putting the finishing touches to the scheme, and until they get used to the new layout.”